Saturday, August 31, 2013

Freestyle Friday:Sexy September.Emotion & Music

This month we’re exploring music and sensuality with a song and freestyle concept that allows you to dance based upon your connection to the music.  One of my favorite songs to dance to is At Last by Etta James.  This song signifies the soulful rhythm that allows us as dancers to reach inside of ourselves and connect our soul to our dancing.  Etta James is considered one of the most influential blues vocal artists of her time.  She has also been known as Miss Peaches, The Matriarch of Rhythm and Blues (Wikipedia, 2013).  I love this fun fact about her.  I think it fits perfectly in the sense of pole dancing.  I’ve read about other studios and how they encourage their students to create an alter ego for their pole classes.  Sometimes our dancing comes alive if we disassociate our personal ties and every day worries from our identity.  By creating an alter ego like “Miss Peaches”, we may find ourselves able to let go and become that alter ego through our dancing.  If you are able to connect with the Queen of Soul by letting her voice lead you towards an emotional connection, I highly encourage you to challenge yourself this month in our Freestyle Friday.  We’ll keep the lights low and supply the music.  You just need to show up ready to dance.  Feel free to bring a recording device- phone or camera (tripod available if needed).  We strongly encourage the use of recording devices for your own personal reflection and growth in your dancing journey.  For more insight regarding this month’s freestyle dance exploration challenge, check out WeFly Tracee Kafer’s Emotion & Music video contribution:

Tracee Kafer on Emotion & Music
Pole Harmony Freestyle Friday Sessions:
  • Friday September 6th 7:30pm-8:30pm
  • Friday September 27th 7:30pm-8:30pm
Sign up online!

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

August PDBA Blog Hop: Social Media and Pole Dancing

Within recent years the pole community has exploded online with the use of various social media outlets.  Social media has contributed to the success and growth of the pole dancing community.  Within the last year, the addition of instagram has added to the creativity within the community with the sharing and connecting of fellow polers around the world.  This connection with so many through the common interest of pole dancing has fueled the connections through the social media circuits and helped form many bonds with dancers from around the world.  People who may never have otherwise come into contact with each other.  For this month's blog hop, I wanted to talk about some of my favorite social media sites and some common usage for business purposes.1.  Facebook.  I share all the business class information, special deals, events, pictures and educational information for my students in my blog posts through the Pole Harmony Facebook page.  Facebook was my first social media connection to family and friends.  It's easy to use and great for sharing to a larger base of people because almost every one has a Facebook now a days.
2. Twitter.  I've just recently begun to explore the ins and outs of Twitter.  I've made some great connections and it's been a fun way to correspond with a different crowd that I may not be connected with through Facebook.  I share similar business related posts on my Pole Harmony Twitter to what I share on Facebook except my statuses are restricted to 140 characters or less.  Twitter summarizes my Facebook posts.
3. YouTube. Where would the pole community be if it weren't for YouTube?  YouTube introduced me to pole dancing.  It's where I first began to learn all about spins and tricks.  I consider myself to be of the "old school" generation of polers- those who didn't have the luxury of learning in a studio setting.  We relied heavily on YouTube videos. Watching and rewatching, pausing, and rewind.  We spent countless hours watching dance video after dance video.  Analyzing every detail and specific movement of a dancer.  Maybe that's why so many of us are instructors now.  We trained ourselves to have an eye for movement specific to pole moves.  Now a days, I no longer have a personal YouTube channel.  Instead I only have my Pole Harmony YouTube channel.  I like having my channel for business only.  It gives me the opportunity to post videos and still have the connection to everything I work hard for.
4.  Instagram.  I have been completely in love with this form of social media.  Instagram is perfect for the pole community because so much of what is involved in pole is about being able to take a picture of yourself accomplishing an awesome move or trick and then sharing it with your friends.  Instagram connects to other means of social media which makes it the perfect addition to the pole community.  In the past year, many studios and pole specific groups have begun to integrate pic sharing challenges.  This has added to the fun and never boring theme of pole dancing.  It has also encouraged more networking among dancers.  I love being able to separate my Instagram and share all of the pole studio related images on the Pole Harmony Instagram. This has probably become one of my favorite forms of social media.  What did we do before Instagram?
5. Google+.  I'm not sure if this one is as popular as all the others but I decided to get on board with it because it's connected to YouTube and so many other necessary accounts integrated through Google.  I share everything on my Pole Harmony Google+ page that I share on Facebook.
6.  I think this one is necessary to mention because I have always described it as the "Facebook for Pole Dancers." StudioVeena is the major networking and resource site for the pole dancing community.  I have made so many friendships through this site that not mentioning it would be a complete disservice.  StudioVeena has really become all the aforementioned social media sites in one.  It has status and event sharing, pictures, discussion boards, and video uploads.  A one stop shop for everything pole related.  In recent years, many polers have crossed over into other forms of dance and dabbled in some aerial.  The community is an eclectic assortment of information regarding all things aerial and alternative fitness.
So you're probably thinking, how in the world do I manage all these social media sites all while managing a business and working a full time Monday through Friday job?  Well personally, I don't sit at my computer every day keeping all my sites up to date.  I utilize a social media manager.  With so many social media sites out there, now a days a social media manager is an important addition to keeping one's business organized online. At the end of the day, I can rest comfortably knowing my business is in good hands.  This also frees up my time to allow me to focus on the social media aspects that tap into my creativity such as YouTube and Instagram.  Both of these require more of my attention and I enjoy being able to devote my energy towards these accounts as opposed to the others.
To recap, below I've listed all the Pole Harmony social media sites.  Feel free to "Like", "Follow", or "Share" any or all.  Thank you!
*Blog Hop is a monthly blog topic involving pole dancing blog contributors from around the world actively involved in the online Pole Dancing Bloggers Association.  Each month we write our perspective about a given topic pertaining to the pole dancing community.  To read fellow Pole Dancing Bloggers Association August Blog Hop entries: click here.

Monday, August 5, 2013

Pole dancing. It's an expression.

"The sexy style of pole dance is as much an art form as any other, and a legitimate form of expression," 

I had the opportunity to welcome two well known competitors training for the upcoming August 2013 Midwest pole competition to train at Pole Harmony this past weekend.  During their training session, several prospective students stopped by to check out the studio and got a glimpse into the world of pole.  One of the topics that got discussed with one of the many women that stopped by was the various classifications of pole dancing.  It really left an impression on me as I heard the words I commonly preach come out of the mouth of another fellow pole dancer and instructor.  

Pole dancing can be anything you want it to be.  It isn't just all one sided, there are many sides to pole dancing and each dancer interprets movement differently.  The various interpretations are what make it so interesting.  It's about keeping an open mind to accept that dance is an expressive world where the possibilities are endless. I love the sensual fluid movement that creates a sexually charged dance.  It's just the way I've identified personally with how my body looks the best when it moves.  Of course there are a lot of people out there pushing to de-sexualize pole dancing.  There's a movement to make pole an acceptable and well respected sport and many believe the only way to achieve this is to remove anything deemed sexy.  At Pole Harmony, we accept all forms of pole dancing.  Each form of dance is respected as it all serves as a learning experience that fuels our artistic souls.  The unity of dance creates the perfect balance and harmony within our expressive nature.  

We welcome all dancers to join us in creating an environment that grows creatively through all our differences.  Join us in Pole & Flow Tuesdays at 7:10pm for routines designed specifically to introduce concepts of discovering your personal movement.